Gabriel Magalaes has forced Rio Ferdinand to take back his words after the defender recovered from a shaky start to put in a Man of the Match performance on his first start for Arsenal.
Despite not playing a competitive game in six months, the injury to David Luiz in the build-up to Arsenal’s first Premier League game of the season against Fulham forced Nikel Arteta to turn to the new signing.
He was picked ahead of his fellow new Gunner, William Saliba and he didn’t make the best of starts to the game.
He even had a moment when he misjudged the movement of the ball and had to be saved by Bernd Leno who was quick to stop the opposing player from scoring.
Rio Ferdinand wasn’t pleased with how the defender started the game and made his views known.
However, the Brazilian emerged as a better player in the second half and he even scored a goal to cap off the perfect debut, Ferdinand was forced to eat his words after the game.
“Sometimes as an ex player we sit here and we make judgements on players quickly,” Ferdinand told BT Sport as quoted by The Sport Review.
“As a player, if a new player comes into the changing room, you’ll see their first few touches and you might say they’re not for you.
“Players can grow on you and they can start to build.
“Today was a fine example of that. We were saying negative things based upon what we saw early on. We thought maybe it was same old Arsenal, buying a centre-half who doesn’t fit into the team. He was sloppy with his passing.
“You have to give people time. It’s a big ask, it’s a new country. He had a very, very good debut.”